CHICAGO – October 20, 2010. Governor Pat Quinn today announced that 18 Illinois school districts statewide will receive a total of more than $270 million from Illinois Jobs Now! to construct new buildings or expand existing ones. This capital funding will provide vital classroom space while creating approximately 3,700 construction jobs. Chicago Public Schools will receive more than $54 million. Combined with local funding, this investment will create more than 1,000 jobs in Chicago.
“This capital funding will help school districts in Chicago and across the state update their facilities and make critical repairs,” said Governor Quinn. “We must invest in schools that will allow Illinois’ students to thrive and create a better future for our state.”
The 18 districts were approved for the state funding in fiscal year 2010 after their projects were certified by the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) and the Illinois Capital Development Board (CDB).
The funding will allow districts to build new schools and classroom additions. Other improvements will include renovations to existing classrooms and upgrades to aging facilities. The grants will also allow several districts to recover from damage resulting from natural disasters, including flooding. The capital funding, combined with local dollars, will allow school districts to start projects totaling more than $527.7 million.
In addition to Chicago Public Schools, a number of districts in northern Illinois will also receive funds:
- Waukegan Community Unit School District 60 will receive more than $28.2 million to construct additions to 12 elementary schools.
- Bensenville Elementary School District 2 will receive more than $8.2 million to build additions on two elementary schools.
- DeKalb Community Unit School District 428 will receive more than $20.6 million to build a new high school.
- South Holland School District 151 will receive more than $15 million to build additions on one middle school and three elementary schools.
- North Palos School District 117 will receive more than $1.7 million to build an early learning center addition.
“These capital funds will improve the educational environment at school districts across Illinois, while creating badly-needed construction jobs and training our future workers while helping our current ones.” said CDB Executive Director Jim Riemer.
“This funding will provide much-needed improvements, which the local districts would not otherwise be able to afford,” said State Superintendent of Education Christopher A. Koch.” Most of these districts have waited years for the funds, and hopefully now they’ll be able to get these projects underway and have students learning in new schools soon.”
Before the passage of Governor Quinn's Illinois Jobs Now! capital construction program, Illinois had not had a major capital construction program in more than a decade.
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